What I did love about the Caribbean
I mentioned that I hated the Caribbean living. But there were a few things I did love.
For one, I hadn’t played this much basketball since my undergraduate days. I love basketball and consider it the best form of exercise. I love playing it because you are constantly running and you do not realize you are tired until you are done. I lost tons of weight in the Caribbean because I was playing basketball. After a couple of months, I was in the zone and could not miss a shot, it’s a great feeling.
Another thing I liked was the size of the island. Obviously, this may differ depending on your school but realistically everything was within a 10-minute bicycle ride. I loved being on a bicycle instead of a car. It was nice and refreshing even with dogs chasing you. I lived on the outskirts of the main town away from most of the students. If I had elected to be around most of the students, everything would have been within 5 minutes. If I was running late, I could get to school in 3 minutes and 40 seconds. Because of this, if we had a short break, I could easily go home for a quick nap or a quick meal.
The weather was beautiful. I prefer heat but I think most people would take this. 80-95 degrees Fahrenheit all year around. There is a monsoon season but it rains from around 4am to 6am and the land is completely dry by 8 in the morning unless you wake up while it’s raining, often times you never knew it rained. Rarely a cloud in the sky.
The stars at night were a sight to see. The population was small and there was minimal light pollution so as a result, you had a beautiful clear view of the stars from anywhere.
The water was amazing. I snorkeled at least 3 times a week. I would sometimes snorkel to class. Other times I would snorkel during our lunch break. If I did it before class I would normally bike to the school first, drop off my clothes, then bike to the water and snorkel back to the school. Imagine swimming in a pool with vibrant colored fish: bright blue, yellow, red. It was amazing. The first time I snorkeled to class, at which time I lived near the water in my 1st semester, my roommate was supposed to bring my clothes to class. He decided to skip the first class and so I ended up in school with no dry clothes. I sat in the back of class with my prescription goggles sopping wet. Fortunately that day, I wore a t-shirt when I swam, which I usually did not do so at least I was wearing a shirt.
Snorkeling provided an escape from the island because when you are underwater, you can pretend you are anywhere. I would pretend I was back home swimming with my daughter.
These were the only things I liked on the Caribbean island and the same things that kept me going.